France Loses Strategic Trade Partner in Russia Due to Failed Mistral Deal
By terminating the Mistral deal with Russia, France closed the door on a golden opportunity to establish strategic and trade partnership with Russia, said Philippe Migault, a senior research fellow at the French Institute of International and Strategic Relations (L'Institut de Relations Internationales et Strategiques – IRIS).
The 1.3 billion dollar deal was officially terminated on Wednesday. Paris is reported to have already transferred some 1.1 billion euros to a Russian bank as a compensation for the non-delivery of two Mistral-class helicopter carriers.
"France managed to close the door on the entire Russian defense market, potential Eldorado, and all in order to please US and European "allies." Due to the cancellation of the Mistral contract, a strategic partnership with Russia collapsed," Migault said.
Safran S.A. and Thales Group, two leading French multinational companies that specialize in aerospace, defense, transport and security, have already reduced their presence in Russia.